United Nations – UN Secretary-General, Ban Ki-Moon has urged member states to ensure that indigenous peoples participate and benefit from the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Ban made the call on Monday in a video message to the 15th Session of the Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues (UNPFII15) in New York, with the theme: “Indigenous peoples: Conflict, Peace and Resolution”.
He said that member states must ensure that indigenous peoples also benefitted from the Addis Ababa Action Agenda, the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction and the Paris Agreement on climate change.
According to him, indigenous people are increasingly being drawn into conflicts over lands, resources and rights.
“Lasting peace requires that indigenous peoples have access to cultural, social and economic justice.
“The 2014 World Conference on Indigenous Peoples, has called on the United Nations to ensure a coherent approach,’’ he said.
The UN Chief said that it had developed a System-Wide Action Plan in response to the call by the conference.
“It is essential that we work as one to realize the full rights of indigenous peoples,” he said.
NAN reports that the PFII is an advisory body to the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) established on July 28, 2000.
It brings Member States and indigenous peoples’ representatives together to address implementation of the six mandated areas of the PFII with reference to the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP), conflict, peace and resolution.
Others are to coordinate among the three UN mechanisms on indigenous affairs, dialogue with the Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and the Chair of the Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.
The session will also consider the future work of the PFII, and emerging issues.
The Permanent Forum comprises 16 independent experts, functioning in their personal capacity, who serve for a term of three years as members and may be re-elected or re-appointed for one additional term.
The indigenous peoples are in Africa, Asia, Central and South America and the Caribbean; the Arctic; Central and Eastern Europe, Russian Federation, Central Asia and Transcaucasia; North America; and the Pacific.
The UN estimates the population of indigenous peoples at between 220 million and 350 million. (NAN)